Stephanie Louise Swanson, 51, of Gainesville, Florida passed away on April 20, 2023, in Largo,
Stephanie, was born in Gainesville, Florida to Linda and Larry Swanson on September 1, 1971.
As a young girl, Stephanie was always happy, spirited, and she loved to participate in group
activities. She was devoted to her family and friends. She had a signature smile and was always
interested in other people.
During her middle school years, she enjoyed cheerleading for the Boys and Girls Club. She was
a member of Girl Scouts from Brownies to Cadettes. Stephanie loved track and she participated
with the Howard Bishop Middle School team for the Gator games for physically disabled
students. Stephanie was chosen as the Poster Child for the Epilepsy Foundation of Florida where
she received an award by Florida Governor Bob Graham. During her high school years, she was
involved with Upward Bound, a Christian Group where she attended camp in North Carolina,
and attended meetings where they would pray and have fellowship. Stephanie also attended the
Epilepsy Camp of Florida during her high school years. She won the award for Dreamers and
Doers sponsored by Disney World in the Spring of 1990. She went to Gainesville High School
and graduated in 1990. From 1990 to 1997, Stephanie volunteered at Head Start, reading to the
children every morning. In 2000, she attended Project Return, where she could be a part of a
creative environment and make friends. For the past 10 years, Stephanie has lived in Lutz,
Florida at an assisted living facility. A place she called home, where she was loved and enjoyed
the caring environment. Stephanie had a love for Disney and the highlight for her 50th birthday
was visiting Disney World. Throughout her life, Stephanie was a believer in Christ which gave
her strength and peace.
Stephanie Louise Swanson is survived by her Mother, Linda Hall (Byford) of Gainesville, FL;
Father, Larry Swanson (Judi) of Tampa, FL; Sister, Sherri Carkhuff (Maynard) of North Tustin,
CA; Sister, Kirsten Kennedy (Joseph) of Gainesville, FL; Niece Laurel Carkhuff of North Tustin,
CA; Nephew, Alex Carkhuff of North Tustin, CA; Nephew, Will Kennedy of Gainesville, FL;
Step-Sister, Tracy Messier (Todd) and Son Blake Messier of Crawfordsville, FL.
Visitation will be held at Forest Meadows Funeral Home, 725 NW 23rd Ave. Gainesville, FL
32609 on Wednesday, April 26, 2023, from 5:00 pm to 7:00 pm.
Funeral service will be held in the Chapel at Forest Meadows Cemetery, 4100 NW 39th Avenue,
Gainesville, FL 32606 on Thursday, April 27, 2023, at 11:00 am. Burial /interment will follow at
the same location, Forest Meadows Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to: Magnolia Manor, 17420 Old Tobacco
Road, Lutz, FL 33558.
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Steph- I love you and will see you again. I hope your having a fun time in heaven they needed you up there because you have the best smile and heart. I am praying hard for your mom dad and family Stephiii!!
Steph you will forever live in my heart ❤️. I was so blessed 🙌 😇 🙏 to have you as cousin. Our times together ❤️ always 🪨 rocked. You touched 🥲 so many lives in your journey and your legacy of a fighter and a heart ❤️ of gold 💛 ✨️ you got from Your grandmother 👵 Louise Layman . I know your bright 🌞 ✨️ shining ✨️ light ✨️ in heaven while your rockin your Gator gear. Have fun with grandma 👵 and big poppa and we will together in the future all be up there tubing on the river of gold. Your cousin J.J loves you 😘 and im so proud of you.
Dear Linda and family, I never got to meet Stephanie in person but know how much she was loved. She now has her golden wings and is one of God’s beloved angels. I can’t be at her services but know you’re all in my thoughts and prayers.
I just read Stephanies Obituary. So beautiful. I had no idea she was so active during her lifetime. Losing a child, no matter how old, in your lifetime must be terribly difficult.
My love and deepest sympathy to you and your family.